Punk Archaeology Practice Notes

Todd Reisenauer and Troy Reisenauer of Les Dirty Frenchmen.

Todd Reisenauer and Troy Reisenauer of Les Dirty Frenchmen.

The other night, Troy Reisenauer and Todd Reisenauer invited me over to the Les Dirty Frenchmen practice space for the first of our get-together of practices, this for the February 2, 2013 Punk Archaeology un-conference at Sidestreet Grille and Pub in downtown Fargo, North Dakota. Through the randomness inherent to the music world, this assembly happened — come to think of it, every band I’ve ever played in has never been planned. It was a process that came together over a matter of several conversations and days or weeks — the important thing, though, was each individual’s willingness and desire to play for the love of playing. Todd and Troy offered to bring their slaying punk guitars to back the songs and lyrics of Andrew Reinhard, and the keyboard of Michael Wittgraf. Andrew’s original punk archaeology tunes are available here, and free for download.

As Reisenauer, Reisenauer and I bounced around from one song to another, there certainly were tunes we favored. Todd rightly pointed out that we ought to stick with a theme, though, and that Reinhard’s tunes definitely have a garage punk sound. So this helped us narrow and focus our practice, as earlier we considered other classics such as Bobby Fuller’s “I Fought the Law” and Velvet Underground, “Sweet Jane.” We decided to not play those. At least not this time.

Eventually, Team Reisenauer, Reisenauer & I decided on a short list of punk archaeology songs. Some classic go-tos include covering “Nervous Breakdown” by Black Flag, “Loser’s Club” by The Humpers, and “I Wanna Be Your Dog” by Iggy Pop and The Stoogies. We also ran through two Reinhard originals, including “History,” and “Publish and Perish,” a segment of this latter song appropriating a punk-abilly sound that might be familiar to Social Distortion fans.


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